New Hindu temple strengthens bond between UAE and India - GulfToday

New Hindu temple strengthens bond between UAE and India


Sheikh Nahyan cuts the ribbon at the opening of the Hindu Temple Dubai. Kamal Kassim/Gulf Today

Jamil Khan, Senior Reporter

The much-awaited Hindu Temple Dubai has officially opened its doors in Jebel Ali. The new temple is the first in the last 60 years and is located in Worship Village, which houses nine religious shrines, including seven churches, one gurudwara and the new temple.

The opening was done by Sheikh Nahyan Bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Tolerance and Coexistence, in the presence of Sunjay Sudhir, Indian Ambassador to the UAE, Dr. Omar Al-Muthanna, the Chief Executive Officer of the Social Regulatory and Licensing Agency for the Community Development Authority (CDA), and Raju Shroff, trustee of the Hindu Temple Dubai.

The ceremony of the ribbon cutting was attended by representatives of all the religious leaders from the Worship Village.

The management has officially welcomed devotees to the 70,000 square foot premises by monumentally lighting a lantern together to celebrate the opening. Over 200 dignitaries, ambassadors and local community leaders attended the celebration.

Burgeoning a new era of tolerance, generosity and inclusivity, the community-run Hindu Temple Dubai is an illuminating structure of devotion and coexistence. It has taken the Hindu Temple Dubai trustees three years to bring this dream to reality.


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Talking to the Gulf Today, Raju Shroff, the Trustee of the Temple said, “The Temple is not only a worshiping place but also a platform for the community to congregate. We have the prayer hall of the capacity of around 500 people standing and the community hall where 300 people can celebrate their regular events like birthdays, weddings or others.”

He also pointed that there is a ‘knowledge room’ as a bridge between volunteers and community members who wish to learn dance, Sanskrit and other religious things. He mentioned that the current building is a sign of two cultures: Arabic and Hindu.

“Despite COVID-19, construction timelines were not hampered because of the support of the Dubai government. The Hindu Temple Dubai is truly a remarkable icon of how receptive and compassionate the Dubai government is. The Emirati generosity remains,” he said.

Community leader Vashu Shroff and his family founded the first Indian temple, finding its humble beginnings in one room. “It was a home that welcomed the diaspora at large to come to find peace when they needed it and at the crossroads of modernity and tradition to ensure the preservation of our beliefs that would be meaningful for the future generation,” he said.

“Mirroring this expansion, the Indian community saw an astronomical increase in our population from roughly 6,000 in 1958 to the 3.3 million people that call it home today. This meteoric rise also breathed new life into every aspect of the economy, from business to tourism making Indians an immensely influential demographic in the region. With over 30,000 businesses ranging from small to medium and even multinational, the community assimilated seamlessly. What we are seeing now is a rich tapestry of interlaced traditions and heritage. Today, Dubai is famously known as India’s best city and making it India’s vital hub.”

This impetus led to the birth of The Hindu Temple Dubai, an institution inspired by the legacy of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai.

The temple will aim to mirror his visionary approach by laying the foundation for an establishment that will stand the test of time. A space empowered by a simple but moving thought, ‘For the people, by the people’.

The Hindu Temple Dubai stands as a monument of inner peace and a refuge where devotees can seek solace in divinity. It is a beautiful bond between two cultures. The showstopping piece is undoubtedly the duality of the traditional Hindu dome atop the Mashrabiya screens infused with the 3D-printed lotus symbol. The transparent dome extends to the sky while the Arabian architecture-inspired screens cast calming shadows through the room.

By incorporating white marble to adorn every inch of the temple, it beautifies and reflects harmony and purity. The marble pillars and arches are also intricately handcrafted with designs and scriptures. To bring the Hindu Temple Dubai from a vision to reality, renowned temple architecture consultant Subhash Bhoite brought his 45 years of experience to ensure every aspect was accounted for. The architects dreamed of a traditional temple but contextualised for the modern world, imbued with Hindu motifs, driven by modern design with a blend of Emirati architecture.



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